York is fortunate to have a lot of good schools – a fact that was underlined with the latest performance tables published on Thursday (January 21).
The provisional Key Stage 4 tables show that the percentage of pupils gaining five or more A*–C grades at GCSE (or equivalent), including English and maths, is 64%.
That result places York in the top 14% of local authorities in England, and at the top of the Yorkshire and Humber region.Error, group does not exist! Check your syntax! (ID: 4)
But when it comes to ranking York state secondary schools on their results an interesting pattern emerges.
A separate Department For Education table gives the percentage of students at each school eligible for free school meals (FSM).
Families qualify for free school meals if they are on a low income or benefits.
If you compare the exam results with the free school meal percentages it shows that the schools with the lowest percentage of FSM-eligible children have the highest grades.
Those with the highest proportion of FSM students have the lowest grades.
The only exception is Millthorpe School, which has the same percentage of A*-C grades as Huntington and Joseph Rowntree schools (66%) but 1.6% fewer students eligible for free school meals.
While you have to be careful to make too simplistic a direct correlation, it does suggest a strong link between the socio-economic factors of a school’s catchment area and exam grade performance.
Worth bearing in mind before rushing to any judgements on which York schools are “better” than others.
|School||% achieving 5+ A*-C GCSEs inc English and maths 2015||Percentage of pupils eligible for FSM at any time during the past 6 years|
|Manor CE Academy Trust||78%||10.3%|
|All Saints RC School||70%||14.3%|
|Joseph Rowntree School||69%||19.2%|
|Archbishop Holgate's School||66%||19.5%|
|Canon Lee School||45%||30.6%|
|York High School||24%||34.9%|
Councillor Jenny Brooks, executive member for education, children and young people, said of the performance tables:
Our young people’s efforts, supported by their families and teachers, show again that York offers leading educational opportunities which set firm foundations for aspiring futures.
Congratulations to all concerned.